The kids are almost out of school, and the countdown to summer break is on at our house. As a mom of a 9 and 11-year-old, I am looking for ways to keep them off screens this summer.
It’s no wonder that digital detox camps and low-tech resort vacations are on the rise. I just read that kids ages 8-18 now spend, on average, of 7.5 hours in front of a screen for entertainment each day, 4.5 of which are spent watching TV, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. Those numbers are scary and made me want to try a digital detox in our house or at the very least, cut down on screen time over the summer months.
A digital detox is like a food cleanse, except instead of bad food, you cut out screens. Phones, iPad, computers, and TVs take us away from each other. We know that screens make us less focused, that constantly checking our email, text and Facebook makes us less productive and disconnected from our real lives.
Here are some ideas cut down on screens
- Move your phone out of the bedroom at night and don’t let kids have screens in the bedroom
- Don’t allow screens at the dinner table
- Increase outdoor activities: hiking, biking, sports, gardening
- Read a book, off line
- Walk in nature
Looking for more information on how to find balance in the tech heavy world? Check out Sabbath Manifesto, a site that provides tips on how to slow down our lives in an increasingly hectic world and learn how to take part in their Unplug Challenge. Another site I like is Folk Rebellion, a movement and lifestyle brand that encourages and inspires people to become mindful of the technology they use. A portion of all their profits are donated to the Children and Nature Network, which helps to create a world in which every child can play, learn and grow outdoors.
Hope you get to disconnect from technology this summer and connect more with family and friends!